Does the Scientology religion have a concept of God?
Most definitely. In Scientology, the concept of God is expressed as the eighth dynamic – the urge toward existence as infinity, as God, or the Supreme Being. As the eighth dynamic, Scientology’s concept of God rests at the very apex of universal survival.
In his book, Science of Survival, L. Ron Hubbard wrote:
“No culture in the history of the world, save the thoroughly depraved and expiring ones, has failed to affirm the existence of a Supreme Being. It is an empirical observation that men without a strong and lasting faith in a Supreme Being are less capable, less ethical, and less valuable to themselves and society …. A man without an abiding faith is, by observation alone, more of a thing than a man.”
Unlike some religions that make explicit statements regarding the identity of God, Scientology has no set dogma concerning God that it imposes on its members. As with all its tenets, Scientology does not ask individuals to believe anything on faith. Rather, as one’s level of spiritual awareness increases through participation in auditing and training, he attains his own certainty of every dynamic and, as he moves from the seventh (spiritual) dynamic to the eighth, will come to his own conclusions concerning the nature of God (or the Supreme Being or infinity) and his relationship to it.
Scientology seeks to bring one to a new level of spiritual awareness where he can reach his own conclusions concerning the nature of God and what lies in store for him after his present lifetime. Thus, like many Eastern religions, salvation in Scientology is attained through personal spiritual growth and enlightenment.
Why is Scientology a religion?
Scientology meets all three criteria generally used by religious scholars when examining religions:
- A belief in some Ultimate Reality, such as the Supreme Being or eternal truth that transcends the here and now of the secular world.
- Religious practices directed toward understanding, attaining or communicating with this Ultimate Reality.
- A community of believers who join together in pursuing the Ultimate Reality.
Scientology’s beliefs in an Ultimate Reality that transcends the material world include its concepts of the spirit (termed in Scientology the “thetan”), the spiritual world (the seventh dynamic) and the Supreme Being (the eighth dynamic). Scientology holds in common with all great religions the dream of peace on Earth and salvation for man. What is new about Scientology is that it offers a precise path for bringing about spiritual improvement in the here and now and a way to accomplish it with absolute certainty.
The second element can be found in Scientology’s ceremonies such as naming, marriage and funeral services, but predominantly in the religious services of auditing and training, through which Scientologists increase their spiritual awareness and attain an understanding of the spiritual world and, ultimately, their relationship with the Supreme Being.
As to the third element, a very vital community of believers can be found at any church of Scientology at almost any time of the day.
Scientology is thus a religion in the oldest sense of the word. Scientology helps man become more aware of God and more aware of his own spiritual nature and that of those around him. Scientology scripture recognizes that there is an entire dynamic (urge or motivation in life) devoted to the Supreme Being (the eighth dynamic) and another dynamic that deals solely with one’s urge toward existence as a spirit (the seventh dynamic). Acknowledgment of these aspects of life is a traditional characteristic of religions.
What does the Scientology cross represent?
The Scientology cross is an eight-pointed cross that represents the eight parts, or dynamics, of life. The Scientology cross, which was first conceived in 1954, symbolizes the ability to live happily across all eight dynamics.
Do Scientologists have church ceremonies?
Yes. Sunday Services are held regularly in Churches of Scientology. Scientology ministers also perform naming ceremonies for newborns, as well as weddings and funerals.
Is Scientology open to anyone?
Scientology is open to anyone who seeks spiritual betterment. The materials that make up Scientology’s scriptures are broadly published, widely promoted, and available to anyone. Churches and missions are open to the public, seven days a week. Anyone can come in for a tour to personally see what the Church is all about.
Scientologists come from all walks of life, ranging from teachers to businessmen, doctors, housewives, attorneys, engineers, nurses, construction workers, celebrities, marketing and administrative personnel, secretaries, athletes, civil servants, and virtually any other pursuit.
What does Scientology have to say about other religions?
Scientology respects all religions. It shares with other religions the dreams of peace and salvation.
The Church’s Creed states that “all men have inalienable rights to their own religious practices and their performance.”
Scientology ministers-in-training study all the major religions of the world to better understand how Scientologists fit into the larger religious community.